Presidential Commission (United States)

In the United States, a Presidential Commission is a special task force ordained by the President to complete a specific, special investigation or research. They are often quasi-judicial in nature; that is, they include public or in-camera hearings.

Presidential Commissions often serve one of two political purposes: to draw attention to a problem (the publication of a report by a commission can generally be counted on to draw attention from the media, depending on how its release is handled); or, on the other hand, to delay action on an issue (if the President wants to avoid taking action but still look concerned about an issue, he can convene a commission and then let it slip into obscurity). However, there have been cases (the Tower, Rogers and Warren Commissions) where the commission has created reports that have been used as evidence in later criminal proceedings.

List of Presidential Commissions

This list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it.

See also

For additional reading

Donna Batten, et al. Encyclopedia of Governmental Advisory Organizations (Detroit, MI: Gale, 1973- . annual editions).

Kenneth Kitts, Presidential Commissions and National Security: The Politics of Damage Control (Boulder: Lynne Rienner, 2006).

Steven D. Zink, Guide to the Presidential Advisory Commissions, 1973-1987 (Alexandria, VA: Chadwyck-Healey, Inc, 1987).

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